[SOLVED] Convert old Office PC to Gaming PC

Jan 7, 2022
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Good afternoon everyone.

I would like to convert my old ThinkCentre M700 into a gaming PC for my son.

I thought all I would need to do was buy RAM and a graphics card, but that is now where I am running into issues. With the second GPU I purchased, neither one fit in the case. Which then led me down a rabbit hole on what I need to get this up and running.

I need help! I dont need anything more than a budget PC that he can play fortnite on. The Monitor is a old samsung TV (1080) so no need for 4k, etc.

The existing computer is as follows:

Model: ThinkCentre M700 Tower
Processor: Intel Core i3-6100
Memory: 32 GB DDR4 (which I upgraded).
GPU: ZOTAC GAMING GeForce GTX 1650 OC 4GB

Please help!!!

Chris
 
these pre-built systems like what you have use a lot of proprietary components; power supply, motherboards, etc that cannot be replaced with standard components and will not fit in standard cases.

the best option is almost to always to salvage what you can; drives, GPU, CPU, and maybe RAM.
but these are usually lower quality than most would want in their gaming rigs.

are you looking for a total pre-built system, a starter kit, or just suggestions on what to purchase so you can custom build.

for pre-builts & starter builds i would recommend browsing NZXT.com.
their Starter Series and their custom Build Kits are the top of the line options in this category.

a good option for these types of builds is to get together with your son and do it as a father & son project.
can be a great learning experience for both and quality time together.
 
these pre-built systems like what you have use a lot of proprietary components; power supply, motherboards, etc that cannot be replaced with standard components and will not fit in standard cases.

the best option is almost to always to salvage what you can; drives, GPU, CPU, and maybe RAM.
but these are usually lower quality than most would want in their gaming rigs.

are you looking for a total pre-built system, a starter kit, or just suggestions on what to purchase so you can custom build.

for pre-builts & starter builds i would recommend browsing NZXT.com.
their Starter Series and their custom Build Kits are the top of the line options in this category.

a good option for these types of builds is to get together with your son and do it as a father & son project.
can be a great learning experience for both and quality time together.
 

jasonf2

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Oct 11, 2015
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OEM builders like Lenovo can, but don't necessarily use industry standards like ATX. I can't say that what you are trying to do cannot be done, but you are going to run into issues relative to case size, power supply (not only not big enough, but standard ATX power supply probably wont bolt in without cutting case) and airflow issues.
 
Jan 7, 2022
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I was planning on doing it as Father/Son project.

I bought a new GPU and new RAM. I was going to buy a new case and start building, but am wondering what other components I can salvage?
 

USAFRet

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Mar 16, 2013
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That rabbit hole gets deep, quite quickly.
You find yourself popping out in a whole new hole.

The GPU does not fit in the case
So, new case.

The proprietary motherboard does not fit the new case
So, new motherboard.

Then, the proprietary PSU connections are not ATX standard, and do not work with the new motherboard.
So new PSU.

You've already added RAM.

By now, you've built most of a new PC.

It is often better to sell the existing office thing as a whole, and apply those funds to a real gaming system.
 
am wondering what other components I can salvage?
disks would be fine to keep.
just would need a formatting and fresh OS install with the new build.
may want to add a nice 2.5" SSD or M.2 and just keep the existing disk as backup or extra storage.

that's a fairly low quality CPU and you're gong to need a new motherboard anyway
so i would suggest going for a mid-tier of the newer series like Intel 11th/12th gen or latest AMD Ryzen.
 

Zerk2012

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I was planning on doing it as Father/Son project.

I bought a new GPU and new RAM. I was going to buy a new case and start building, but am wondering what other components I can salvage?
Post a link to the exact ThinkCentre you have this will make things a bit faster.
Some of the boards don't even have a PCI-E slot.
The processor should be a 6100T.
 

punkncat

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The link I posted above shows a mid tower case outfitted with 4X PCI-e "knock outs". I cannot imagine it being the same form factor as it certainly has room, if not the connections needed from the PSU. The other listing for that machine is a SFF much like Dell's DT series, which would mean half height card and possibly no room from PCI slot to power supply.
 

punkncat

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The spec sheet you linked shows the compatible GPU for this rig. None of them are really suitable for gaming. The BIOS of this motherboard could well be locked to those specific cards. This is a trick Dell pulls, often in their older XPS systems.

I am not familiar enough with Lenovo to know if they use proprietary connectors. I would check the front panel connectors and the power supply connectors to see if they are standard. If so, pull the components of this rig and breadboard it (first) with a suitable power supply and see if it will boot with the GPU you have on hand. If it will, measure the motherboard...it's likely m-ITX and you should be able to install it inside an aftermarket case.

Hopefully someone more familiar with this specific model will sound off in that regard.
 
I bought a new GPU and new RAM. I was going to buy a new case and start building
i have a link to a "wish list" i put together for a friend of mine a couple months ago and have just updated this morning.
great for a budget mid-level gaming system if you have a good graphics card.
you could just ignore the RAM & storage if you're already set there.

comes to ~$750:
temp_build
 
Last edited:
Jan 4, 2022
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Hi @cazzara, just to offer a word of encouragement - I struggled with a similar problem, but was very fortunate to find an oversized aluminium case locally. This really was a game changer because we could use the bits we had, he could do the wiring (neatly enough) and get it running! Once he was "Mining" on it, he was very quickly into working out whether his pocket money would run to his desired Graphics card. Incidentally his perception was a "Gaming case" with LEDs would be a winner. Those were prohibitive, but LEDs are inexpensive and demand almost no power!

All machines will have built in obsolescence - on one hand you try to "do it properly" and it will cost a fortune - or you take a chance! Sadly Minecraft's current owner, is going down the planned obsolescece path, and "improving" on the blocky coding - demanding higher and higher spec machines.
 

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